Saturday, January 19, 2019


Marker Details

Historical Marker:

Battle of Fort Dearborn

The marker is located in Chicago, where 18th Street meets Calumet Avenue, 1820 South Calumet Avenue, just south of the railroad tracks.
Dedication Date:
Dedication By:
Alderman Robert W. Fioretti, U.S. Daughters of 1812, Prairie District Neighborhood Alliance, Glessner House Museum, Amerian Indian Center, and the Illinois State Historical Society

Marker Description:
Battle of Fort Dearborn - August 15, 1812From roughly 1620 to 1820, the territory of the Potawatomi extended from what is now Green Bay, Wisconsin, to Detroit, Michigan, and included the Chicago area. In 1803, the United States Government built Fort Dearborn at what is today Michigan Avenue and Wacker Drive as part of a strategic effort to protect lucrative trading in the area from the British. During the War of 1812 between the United States and Great Britain, some Indian tribes allied with the British to stop the westward expansion of the United States and to regain lost Indian lands. On August 15, 1812, more than fifty US soldiers and 41 civilians, including nine womenand 18 children, were ordered to evacuate Fort Dearborn. This group, almost the entire population of US citizens in the Chicago area, marched south from Fort Dearborn along the shoreline of Lake Michigan until they reached this approximate site, where they were attached by about 500 Potawatami. In the battle and aftermath, more than 60 of the evacuees and 15 Native Americans were killed. The dead included Army Captain William Wells, who had come from Fort Wayne with Miami Indians to assist in the evacuation, Naunongee, Chief of the Village of Potawatomi Ojibwe, and the Ottawa Indians, known as the Three Fires Confederacy. In the 1830s, the Potowatami of Illinois were forcibly removed to lands west of the Mississippi. Potawatomi Indian Nations continue to thrive in Michigan, Indiana, Wisconsin, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Canada, and more than 36,000 American Indians from a variety of tribes reside in Chicago today.

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